Kootenay dancer Dani Zak had a terrifying experience in 2012—stuck in a cabin, she was trapped in the middle of a windstorm in which 1500 trees toppled around her. Now the aspiring choreographer has turned the memory into a collaborative dance piece featuring four other students—Emma Weiland, Emma Abbey, Tessa Timmerman and Andriana Bergman.
“I wanted to capture that feeling of being trapped, but also explore the beauty you can find in tragedy,” said Zak, a Grade 12 student who will not only perform in an upcoming show at the Capitol, but choreographed three pieces herself.
“What I really love about collaborating, is I told the girls the story and it’s cool to watch them put their own twist on it, and their own experiences into the movement.”
Zak said the piece, which is set to the song “Medicine” by Daughter, is one of her proudest accomplishments. And she can’t wait to see it performed as part of Movement on May 28.
“It’s a really melancholy song, but absolutely beautiful. It’s contemporary dance with a lot of really good expression. We’re all really excited,” said Weiland, who added it was a pleasure to perform in something created by a peer.
Eve Maslak said the night will feature no shortage of fabulous costumes, but her favourite outfit is a 1920s flapper-style dress.
“There’s one where we wear flapper dresses with headpieces, and it’s a lot of frilly stuff and beading. It’s so much fun,” she said.
Both Maslak and Saida Mackenzie said they really appreciate the opportunity to work with dancers of different ages.
“I’ve danced pretty much all my life, it’s just something I enjoy doing,” said Mackenzie. “And being able to be around different age groups and all the different dancers is so nice.”
Jen MacMillan and Lynette Lightfoot said the collaboration between the high school and a private studio is a no-brainer, and is working great.
“I think that union is important,” said Lightfoot. “A lot of these students take dance at school during the day then come to my studio in the evening. This way we can bring it together so they’re working on one cohesive project.”
Lightfoot said she’s amazed at the work her charges have put into the upcoming performance.
“There are 5 or 6 pieces that are entirely done by students like Dani. They design their own lighting, choose their own costumes, they do it all. They’re taking it one step further,” she said.
Tickets for the show are $11 for adults, $6 for students/seniors and children 6 and under are free Tickets are available at the Capitol Theatre Box Office at 250-352-6363.
For more information visit capitoltheatre.bc.ca.